Don’t make this mistake with metrics

Edited excerpt from 7 Things I Learned from Startup Failure by Gary Swart:

I once had a board member tell me that we were over-measured and under-prioritized. It stung. A lot. But it also made quite an impression. As a business leader you need to figure out the metric that matters most for your company and understand that the more you measure, the less prioritized you’ll be. Don’t fall into the trap of trying to measure everything. What I’ve learned is that in the early days, what matters most is having customers who love and use your product. Figure out the one or two best measures to determine this.

Notes:
(1) There’s a difference between what you measure and what you prioritize. While you might want to track many metrics, you need to prioritize a few of them. Those goals need to be clear in your internal communication and board packet.
(2) Cf. (i) What’s your “simple scoreboard”? and (ii) Brian Balfor’s discussion of Hubspot’s key metric.

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